Crepes: Here, There, Everywhere

The crepe's allure has always held something of the exotic. Perhaps this is due to its French roots, perhaps due to its delicate elegance — lacy and skimpy, French crepes are so different from the rustic heartiness of the classic American pancake that they're an altogether different species.

Crepes have never really gone out of style in this country, but I do seem to be seeing more of them lately, whether on restaurant menus, food carts, or mobile food trucks. In classic French style, popular savory toppings generally include some combination of egg, ham, cheese, mushroom, and spinach, and most sweet versions include nutella, banana, whipped cream, or strawberries.

What's most exciting about crepes, though, is how easy they are to make at home. All you need is a small nonstick skillet, some melted butter, and a grand spirit of adventure. You've also got to be willing to sacrifice (to your own mouth, generally) the first crepe of the batch, which, for some reason, never comes out as perfectly as those later on.

Try this basic crepe recipe for as a base to experiment with sweet or savory combinations, or try this classic crepe topped with sugar and lemon (shown above).

Recipe courtesy of The Illustrated Kitchen Bible: 1,000 Family Recipes from Around the World by Victoria Blashford-Snell, copyright 2008.

Cheryl Sternman Rule is a widely-published food writer and the voice behind the blog 5 Second Rule. Read all of Cheryl's iVillage posts here.

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